Mad­di­son makes stylish amends

The Sunday Telegraph - Sport - - Premier League - By John Percy at the King­power Sta­dium

Last week­end, James Mad­di­son felt com­pelled to is­sue an apol­ogy to his team-mates af­ter be­ing sent off for div­ing, but yes­ter­day felt like pay­back from the £21 mil­lion sign­ing whose bril­liant in­di­vid­ual goal en­sured Le­ices­ter se­cured their first Premier League home win since Septem­ber 22.

Tak­ing the ball beau­ti­fully from Marc Al­brighton’s cross­field pass, he ad­vanced to­wards goal and took ad­van­tage of Adrian Mari­appa’s at­tempted clear­ance to crash a vol­ley past Ben Foster. It was a mag­i­cal mo­ment, and when Le­ices­ter can play like this, it is a mys­tery that they have waited so long to win in front of their own fans.

“James was very up­set with him­self [for get­ting a red card last week] and wanted to make a strong game to give to his team-mates a good per­for­mance,” said Le­ices­ter man­ager Claude Puel.

“It was a fan­tas­tic goal. We played against a di­rect op­po­nent, and we are close in the ta­ble, so it is dif­fi­cult, but we man­aged it well.”

Wat­ford’s ex­cel­lent start to the sea­son must feel like some time ago, with their wor­ry­ing run now two wins from the past 10 games. Their af­ter­noon of frus­tra­tion was com­plete when Eti­enne Capoue was sent off for a foul on Kelechi Iheana­cho in the fi­nal minute.

Le­ices­ter’s open­ing goal came af­ter Ben Chilwell’s pass re­leased Jamie Vardy, who was taken out in the area by Foster, pre­sent­ing ref­eree Gra­ham Scott with a sim­ple de­ci­sion.

Vardy’s penalty was equally sim­ple as he di­rected the ball into the bot­tom left cor­ner with Foster div­ing the other way.

In a re­fresh­ingly open game, both teams at­tacked with verve and pace, but Le­ices­ter in­creased their lead in the 23rd minute af­ter Mad­di­son’s out­stand­ing strike put them in con­trol.

Javi Gra­cia, the Wat­ford man­ager, in­tro­duced Troy Deeney and An­dre Gray early in the sec­ond half, per­haps sens­ing that Le­ices­ter still ap­peared vul­ner­a­ble de­fen­sively. Gray missed two de­cent chances, and Wat­ford could not find the cru­cial break­through.

Capoue was given a straight red card for a dan­ger­ous two-footed chal­lenge on Iheana­cho in the fi­nal minute to seal a mis­er­able af­ter­noon.

Gra­cia plans to ap­peal against the de­ci­sion. “It was in front of me, and Iheana­cho said he didn’t touch him. That’s more im­por­tant than what I say. We dom­i­nated posses­sion, we had 62 per cent but it wasn’t enough. We need to im­prove these sit­u­a­tions.”

Su­per strike: James Mad­di­son is about to pull the trig­ger and shoot Le­ices­ter 2-0 up

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